Idling Engines

Plastic containers, beads, clips, keys, drum skin, metal trays, takeaway coffee cups, Olive oil can, Aluminum foil, Aluminum pipe, chopsticks, 12v DC motors, cable, electronic sensors

Idling engines (2020) interprets Manning’s live sound performances into a gallery installation. This work is translating a particular performance where Manning plays household objects—employing tripod stands, wire drops, motors, and speakers—to transform these mundane elements into an immersive percussive arrangement. 

In this gallery iteration, Manning has built an interactive sound installation where the movements of audience members activate the sculptural sound components. Idling Engines includes a number of small motors that have been attached to cables hanging from the ceiling. When triggered by sensors, the motors send vibrations up and down the cables. Unassuming objects one might find in the boot or footwell of a car—coffee cups, paper clips, keys, takeaway container, chopsticks, drink cans—are filled with a variety of beads to create peculiar reverberations and resonances with each activation.  As an audience member takes a particular journey through the work, they trigger the experimental instruments to construct their own unique composition. 

Idling Engines, 2020